Explore the BBC
3 Oct 2014
Click for a Text Only version of this page
BBC Homepage
BBC Radio

Radio 4
Radio 4 History
BBC History

This Sceptred Isle


55 BC - 1087

1087 - 1327

1327 - 1547

1547 - 1660

1660 - 1702

1702 - 1760

1760 - 1792

1792 - 1837

1837 - 1861

1861 - 1901

1901 - 1919

1920 - 1939

1940 - 1959

1960 - 1979

1980 - 1999


Contact Us


Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

This Sceptred Isle

Isabella of France
Isabella of France
Isabella and Mortimer
In 1326 Isabella and Mortimer led a successful invasion of England and in 1327 Edward II abdicated in favour of his son who was crowned Edward III. Roger Mortimer governed until Edward III overthrew him in 1330.

In 1328 Edward III, on the advice of Mortimer and Isabella, relinquished Scotland to the Scots. He gave his sister, Joan, to David, son of Robert the Bruce of Scotland. Joan was aged seven, David five. This caused outrage.

Mortimer quarreled with the barons. He declared himself the Earl of March, the barons headed by Henry of Lancaster, said he had no right to do so and in 1328 Mortimer, taking Edward III, with him attacked the lands of Lancaster. The barons were in disorder and could not resist Mortimer.

In 1330 Mortimer executed the Duke of Kent, the late king's half brother, for treason. This proved to the barons how dangerous Mortimer was. They backed Edward III and when Parliament sat in Nottingham in 1330 their chance had come. They arrested and executed Mortimer and imprisoned Isabella.

ROGER MORTIMER (1287-1330)

  • First Earl of March
  • Appointed Lieutenant of Ireland by Edward II
  • Joined the coalition of Marcher lords against Hugh Despenser
  • Captured but escaped to France
  • Became Queen Isabella's lover and adviser
  • Deposed and probably murdered Edward II in favour of his son Edward III, aged 14
  • Became King in all but name confiscating the Despenser lands in the Marches
  • In 1328 declared himself First Earl of March
  • Defeated by Robert the Bruce in Scotland in 1328
  • In 1330 he executed the Earl of Kent this led to the 17-year-old Edward III arresting him and executing him

did you know?
Edward II's murderers inserted red hot rods into his bowels which killed him but left no mark on his body.


23rd September 1326
Isabella, Mortimer and their mercenaries sail for England
24th September 1326
Land at Orwell in Suffolk, supported by the king's brother, Edmund of Kent and the earl of Lancaster
29th September 1326
Edward offers a reward for Mortimer's head
15th October 1326
People of London start massacring the King's supporters, including the Bishop of Exeter who is beheaded by a man with a butcher's knife
27th October 1326
Despenser the Elder is tried and sentenced to hang
24th November 1326
Hugh the Younger is executed and his head taken and displayed on London Bridge
25th January 1327
Edward the II's abdication becomes official. His 14-year-old son is crowned King. Mortimer and Isabella have seized power
Select historical period

/home/system/data/timb/kwikquiz.dat does not exist

/home/system/data/timb/kwikquiz.html does not exist

1306Robert I, the Bruce, king of Scotland
1307Edward I dies
Edward II becomes king
1314English defeated at Bannockburn
1318Edward II regains England and the Despensers rise to power
1322Edward II defeats the Marcher lords and the Lancastrians
Thomas of Lancaster is executed
1326Isabella and Mortimer invade England
1327Edward II is deposed
Edward III becomes king
Isabella & Mortimer govern
Scots invade England
1328Edward III recognizes Robert the Bruce as king of Scotland
1330Mortimer arrested and executed

About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy